During my years in England I ate Trifle like there was no tomorrow, because eventually “tomorrow” was going to come along and I’d be returning to America. I loved the silky custard and the cake, soft and juicy from the fruit. It was whole milk there, with lots of cream and no care of calories. Well, 30 years later, it’s time to worry about those things, as well as dairy intolerances. So my little Trifle described below should really be used more like a roadmap than a recipe. Use the type of custard that you like, or instant vanilla pudding, perhaps heavy whipped cream instead of imitation cream topping. The fruit also should be what appeals to you, and with so much available in the market right now, it’s perfect season to sit a’spell and indulge in a little Trifle.
Basically, a Trifle needs a variety of fresh fruit, whipped cream, cake, custard and alcohol (which is optional, Sherry is “traditional”). Our Trifle above uses Bird’s Custard (a powdered product from England, you can find it at most Raley’s or World Markets). Because dairy free is important at my house, we used Almond milk to make the custard and a dairy free topping. Jellies can also be used in lieu of, or in addition to fruit, but we used 5 bananas, 3 cups of sliced strawberries, 3 cups of fresh blueberries. We used pound cake, but you could also use angel food cake, or yellow cake, etc.
The custard needs to be cooled prior to making this dish, but once you’ve got all your ingredients prepped (fruit sliced, cake cubed or thinly sliced for layering) you’re ready to go.
In our photo we layered as follows: cake-fruit-custard, cake-fruit-custard, whipped topping; but you can layer as your tastebuds direct. Maybe you want to soak your cake in Sherry before you layer, maybe you’d prefer a layer of whipped cream in the middle of the layers – do what sounds good. Enjoy!